The University awards positions for doctoral candidates usually twice annually. Please find current information on application deadlines below. Successful applicants are employed as research assistants at Leipzig University. This financial support is available for a maximum of three years.


How to apply for one of the dedicated positions for doctoral candidates:

  • Have your supervising professor or junior professor submit a written application for a position for a doctoral candidate (referred to in German as a Doktorandenförderplatz). The application should be handed in to the Vice-Rectorate for Research and Young Academics.
  • The Vice-Rectorate will then review your application.
  • The Graduate Commission decides on the allocation of positions for doctoral candidates.

Please address your application to:

Professor Erich Schröger
Vice-Rector for Research and Young Academics
Chair of the Graduate Commission

Ritterstraße 26, room 314
04109 Leipzig

Funding can be requested for a maximum of three years. The application must specify the period for which the position is being requested.

Application deadline Start of funding
15 November 1 April

Please submit the following documents (in writing, also enclosing a CD containing the documents as a single PDF document) by the deadline:

  • Written application from your supervising professor or junior professor indicating the funding period (usually three years) and letter of recommendation (no more than two pages)
  • Your letter of motivation (no more than one page)
  • Your CV as a Europass curriculum vitae
  • Doctoral research proposal (no more than eight pages without bibliography¹)
  • Schedule
  • Copies of certificates:
    Compulsory: degree certificate qualifying the candidate for doctoral studies (certified copy)²
  • Supervision agreement (German or English)

¹ You are advised to reduce your reference list to the most important sources.
² If you do not already have this, you must at least provide a provisional, assessable certificate by the closing date for applications. If the certificate is missing or incomplete, your application will be rejected.

  • The applicant should be sufficiently qualified.
  • The Graduate Commission will consider how well the proposal aligns with structured doctoral qualification programmes, such as at the Research Academy Leipzig, with our strategic research profile, or with other special areas of research at the University.

This funding opportunity is reserved exclusively for Leipzig University doctoral researchers who are not hosted by the Faculty of Medicine. The Faculty of Medicine has its own separate doctoral sponsorship programme, which is announced twice a year.
Positions for doctoral candidates are treated as academic staff positions (without teaching duties). Under Sect. 2(1) of the German Act on Fixed-Term Employment Contracts in Academia (WissZeitVG), a person can only be awarded one of these positions for doctoral candidates if they can legally be employed on a temporary basis for the corresponding period of time.

After Approval

  • If you have been accepted for a position for doctoral candidates, you will be notified by the Vice-Rector for Research and Young Academics.
  • Your supervising professor or junior professor will then submit an application to employ you as a research assistant. Please use the form for academic staff for this purpose.

The application by the supervising professor or junior professor to employ the doctoral research needs to be submitted to the Department of Finances at least four weeks before the employment commences. If you have any queries, please contact your institution’s HR administrator.

If you do not accept a position offered to you as a doctoral researcher, it will be awarded to other applicants.

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